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B-Mets hold off Curve to take rubber game

ALTOONA, PA – The Binghamton Mets plated four runs on three straight two-out hits in the eighth inning to beat the Altoona Curve, 5-4, in comeback fashion on Thursday night at Peoples Natural Gas Field. After the B-Mets were no-hit through five innings, Vince Belnome, Jonathan Galvez and LJ Mazzilli strung together a trio of run-producing hits to guide Binghamton to their third rubber match win.

Trailing 2-1, Binghamton feasted on reliever Clario Perez to grab the lead. With two outs and two on, Belnome threaded a chopper past the dive of Erich Weiss at second base to tie the game. Galvez followed with a line drive into left, plating Joe Benson with the go-ahead. LJ Mazzilli capped the big inning with a two-run single into left.

Owning a three-run lead, Pedro Lopez needed three relief pitchers to get through the eighth inning. Beck Wheeler opened the frame and allowed a pair of runners to reach. Adam Kolarek took over and retired Adam Frazier, but surrendered a two-run single to Max Moroff.

With the tying run on base, Paul Sewald grabbed the ball from Kolarek and struck out Jose Osuna. The righty returned with a perfect ninth inning, earning his 19th save of the season.

The game had opened as a pitchers’ duel. Rainy Lara and Matt Bendict traded zeroes through the first four innings. Lara calmly retired the first nine batters he faced before side-stepping Adam Frazier’s leadoff single in a blank fourth. Benedict countered by working around an error in the first and a walk in the second to keep Binghamton off the board.

Mel Rojas Jr. needed one swing to snap the scoreless game in the fifth. The Curve center fielder deposited Lara’s 3-1 pitch into the left-field seats for his second home run of the season.

Albert Cordero answered back in the sixth, ending Benedict’s no-hit bid. The B-Mets catcher ended a personal 0-for-17 slump by launching a leadoff homer to right field. His second blast of the season tied the game at one.

Moroff pushed the Curve back on top with a two-out solo blast in the sixth before the B-Mets’ eighth inning.

Lara (6-4) allowed two runs on four hits over seven innings to earn the win in his first career start against the Curve. Perez (0-1) was handed his first blown save and defeat with Altoona.

The B-Mets (64-52) continue their road trip and open a three-game series against the New Britain Rock Cats on Friday at 7:05 PM. RHP Gabriel Ynoa takes the mound against RHP Ryan Carpenter. The Horizons Federal Credit ion Pregame Show can be heard starting at 6:50 PM on Newsradio 1290 WNBF and the Binghamton Mets channel on TuneIn.

POSTGAME NOTES: Binghamton earned their fifth series win since the All-Star break...it was Binghamton’s fifth win this season when trailing after seven innings…Paul Sewald registered four outs or more to collect a save for the third time this season

Be sure to follow the B-Mets on their official website (www.bmets.com) or on Facebook, Twitter (@bmets) and Snapchat (binghamtonmets). Fans can also stay up to date with all the action on the field by visiting “B-Mets Buzz” at bmets.mlblogs.com or following Tim Heiman (@TimHeiman) on Twitter.

(Courtesy: Binghamton Mets Baseball)